Lockdown Diaries

What are the team up to in lockdown?

May 6th, 2020

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Managing director john gaunt talks us through his lockdown experience…



I’m finding music a real pressure release at the moment. I have realised that working from home can be quite intense. I miss not being able to wander into the gallery or have a walk around the mill and a chat with a few tenants! After a few hours at my desk up in the attic, I decompress with a blast on my low D whistle! I sing in our local church choir which has gone ‘virtual’ which is also a great way to get my mind thinking about something else.

wild swimming

I am really missing my wild swimming/dipping and living on a slope means outdoor paddle pools are a no-no. So I have resorted to cold shower training to keep me used to the chill of the lake or river. 8.5 degrees C this morning!


As we speak we are are waiting for a shopping delivery. We normally run out of bread, biscuits,  cakes and most ingredients. Luckily we live below a farmer who sells eggs.  So lots of baking, normally with the kids which is great fun but a mess. My farmhouse loaf with 2 year old yeast (I didn’t tell the kids) was a triumph. I have learnt not to start making bread at 8pm.

I am setting myself a challenge of recreating my favourite branded biscuits with improvements depending on skill levels and lack of ingredients. Our double jelly Jaffa cakes (don’t believe Mary Berry, it is a fiddle!) were “nice but not the best” according to my home panel of tasting experts. I am learning a few new recipes and how to read them. Hollandaise sauce, for example, doesn’t work well with egg whites in and was a complete waste of a block and half of butter.

Following Jane’s melting moments recipe – dipped in leftover chocolate!
Retail therapy

I go in once a week to the Mill and have found myself indulging in a bit of retail therapy from the Gallery shop every week! My most recent purchase, a Richard Wilson mug to keep me company up in the attic office (really comfy handle!)


I am loving my morning bike ride in the spring sunshine instead of an hour in the car commuting. This is one aspect of lockdown I don’t want to end. It is also one reason why we feel it is so important to create workspaces within communities, to steal a phrase from William.

Find out about Jane’s lockdown experience here.

Read about our team.

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